HES teacher makes special get well card for EHS student

By Greg Miller

STAR STAFF

   Renee Birchfield, a fourth-grade teacher at Hampton Elementary School, has made a special get well card for Joshua Pistole, an Elizabethton teenager. The card includes $30 in quarters donated by neighbors.
   "The neighbors had gotten together to make a gift for him," said Birchfield. "He's really interested in collecting change. On the inside, we spelled out 'Get Well, Josh' with the money.
   "He loves the outdoors, so on the front we put an outdoor scenery. It's a tree with a smiling face and the sun shining."
   Joshua, 16, 2140 W. G St., Lot 9, Monta Clark Mobile Home Park, is hospitalized at the Johnson City Medical Center's Pediatric Care Unit.
   On Nov. 16, Joshua's mother, Donna Pistole, took her son to Sycamore Shoals Hospital after he began suffering from migraine headaches, throwing up and running a high fever. Joshua was transported to Johnson City Medical Center later that day.
   "He was out of school all last week," Pistole said. "I didn't want him in school to give it to everybody else. He's has a bad sinus infection. The infection spread to his brain. At first, he had blood clots in his brain. It's still spreading throughout his body.
   "He's still real sick, and he is taking antibiotics. He's doing better. They're trying to cure the problem. They're doing everything they can to make him feel better. They're treating him real good. He's in good hands. He's getting better, and if he ever gets sick again, I'll take him back there.
   "I thank the Lord for that. I know all things happen for a reason. He's a good boy, and he loves the Lord. We attend the Happy Valley Church of Jesus Christ. It's a good church, very wonderful. The people are very supportive, and when people have prayer requests, they always get answered."
   Pistole says Joshua "loves to ride his bike around the trailer court. He likes football. He's a normal, average 16-year-old. He likes to go swimming, and he likes to go camping. We go shopping together, and we go to the Sycamore Shoals State Historic Area sometimes. He and his cousin, Kendra Tucker, go there and play basketball."
   Joshua is a freshman at Elizabethton High School. Science, according to Pistole, is Joshua's favorite subject. "He also loves art," Pistole commented. "He likes working with his hands, and he likes baking."
   Pistole says her son is looking forward to the holidays. "He wants a six-person outdoor tent," she said. "He's looking forward to Thanksgiving, too, because he wants something to eat. He has just been drinking fluids since he's been in the hospital."
   Joshua's father, Texas resident David Pistole, has been visiting him. "He's glad his dad came and saw him," said Joshua's mom.
   "Joshua is a good boy," remarked Pistole. "I'm proud to have him as my son. I love him very, very much."